Late motor recovery is influenced by muscle tone changes after stroke

Rita Formisano, Patrizia Pantano, M. Gabriella Buzzi, Vincenzo Vinicola, Francesca Penta, Piero Barbanti, Gian Luigi Lenzi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives: To evaluate the time course of motor recovery in a poststroke period ranging from 2 to 6 months and its correlation with both the severity of motor deficit and the muscle tone disturbances (flaccidity or spasticity) of the affected limbs. Design: Prospective cohort study. Setting: A comprehensive rehabilitation hospital. Participants: Forty consecutive stroke patients (21 men, 19 women) with first ischemic stroke who met the inclusion criteria. Interventions: Not applicable. Main Outcome Measure: Change in motor deficit as evaluated by the Adams Hemispheric Stroke Scale. Results: Stepwise regression analysis indicated that the most significant factors influencing motor recovery were the time elapsed since stroke and muscle tone. Conclusions: Rehabilitation of stroke patients is more effective in the first months after the event rather than later, considering the significant correlation observed between motor recovery and time elapsed since stroke. Flaccid patients appear to need 3 months or more before reaching the final plateau, because motor recovery occurs later and/or proceeds more slowly, whereas outcomes for spastic patients with spasticity appears to occur in the first months after stroke.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)308-311
Number of pages4
JournalArchives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2005


  • Flaccid muscle tone
  • Motor skills
  • Rehabilitation
  • Stroke

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Rehabilitation


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